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Thread: Camping: OK BMWMOA, I Can Take a Hint...

  1. #31
    Jim Bud
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Sedalia, CO

    When you consider that....

    when planning the event, no one knows what the weather will be...

    no one knows how many people will show up....many do not preregister..

    and I'm sure that the organizers have to deal with many, mnay last minute happenings where thing don't go as planned....

    It's sort of a miracle that things at a rally go as well as they do...probably because a dedicated group of folks really care and work their butts off....

    so, here is my advice...if you want to have a good time at a rally,

    1) make it an adventure...the rally itself is an unknown puzzle where you have to firgure out how to thrive, not just survive...

    or, 2) make it a real adventure and volunteer to will get to meet a bunch of great people...and you won't be the least bit bored with your spare time....and you will sleep will be exhausted...

    and 3) always just roll with the will be different from the last one, it will require you to be flexible, and if you want, it will be a chance to meet some pretty neat folks from all over the place.....

    rally's are just great....but onlyif you go with the right attitude....
    Jim Bud...

  2. #32
    2006 K1200GT, 1986 K100 merrittgene's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Ames, Iowa

    A great rally!

    Was it a perfect rally? No, but "perfect" is an unobtainable absolute.

    I agree that for future events the male vs. female shower ratio should reflect actual attendance, instead of a 50/50 split. So, the shower trailer could have been designated male-only, with very little inconvenience to the ladies.

    Volunteering is a great way to meet people and, yes, it promotes sleep! I agree with the "it's a miracle that it works as well as it does" idea about a volunteer rally. A lot of people, at all levels, worked VERY hard. To quote ManicMechanic..."walk up to a volunteer and THANK THEM."

    There were a few food vendors on-site, but the fare was good and there were tons of restaurants nearby, also. And, standing in line is yet another great way to meet people.

    I hope everyone can focus on the positives and realize what a great gathering we had, and what a great organization we have.

    I'll be in Vermont for '06...EVERYONE is WELCOME...(whiners can stay home, though, and save more campsites for the MAJORITY of people, whom I'm sure had a GREAT time.
    Gene Merritt - Ames, IA - BMWMOA#111610 - IBA#21886 - Rounder #26
    ---- 1986 K100 ---- 2006 K1200GT ---- 2001 F650GSD ----

  3. #33
    Registered User rickg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Euclid, OH
    Ok, it is time for me to chime in. I have read enough bitchin' and moanin' about the percieved lack of attention that the MOA gave to this Rally.

    First, I will recognize that there were some issues that could have been handled a bit better. Signage leading into the rally could have been larger and easier to read. Yes there could have been more shower trailers brought in to accomadate the crowd. Yes, the lines to the food vendors got a little long. SO WHAT!!

    Have you never been to a large festival? How about a sporting event or a rock concert? Now tell me you haven't waited in line to get food or to go to the b-room. When you have crowds of this size, it is time to take a chill pill and just go with the flow. Bitchin' and moanin' only serves to aggravate yourself and those around you. This was a MOTORCYLCE event run by volunteers. It was not intended to be Club Med! Have some patience for crying out loud, especially if you did not volunteer.

    Now the good. Registration went smoothly considering the lines. The volunteers were friendly and helpful. My girlfriend and I found a camping space under a tree in the main area Thursday around 4:30 pm. Yes we were rain fly to rain fly, but so what! The food vendors served decent food at good prices (compared to most large events that I have attended). No price gouging! We made some new friends and ran into old ones. We were not disturbed by any too roudy behavior. George rocked as did the other local bands. When we got too hot, we walked over to Wally World to enjoy the AC. We had a blast!

    If you did not enjoy yourselves at this well run event, perhaps you are becoming as stuffy as our BMW Automobile brothers who don't know the difference between Beemers and Bimmers.

    This was my 2nd National, with Charleston being the first. I had a blast at that one as well. I have also been to several regional rallies and am involved with running my local club rally. I know how hard it is to please everyone. It just can't be done. Some folks are happier being unhappy. But if you can please 90% or more, I think you have done a great job. For the record, you guys in Lima did an outstanding job! Hope to see you in Vermont!

    Rick Gzesh
    2005 Four Winds President
    2011 Beemer Roadster
    2013 Suzuki DR650SE ADV Lite

  4. #34
    Vegas! Baby! It was 110 degrees there last week! It's a dry heat!

  5. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    Vegas! Baby! It was 110 degrees there last week! It's a dry heat!
    Dry heat? So is my oven.

  6. #36
    jeez, all the bitching about the weather and the showers. like going three days without bathing is a big deal when you are.....CAMPING? camping isnt about showering, it's about being outside, being dirty, being exposed to the elements like your ancestors, getting smelly, and ENJOYING it. it's about bug bites and bug spray, burned burgers and burned noses, drinking beer and telling lies.

    you folks were at a MOTORCYCLE RALLY not a freakin' CONVENTION. you were in a small town at a fairgrounds in ohio, not the waldorf astoria.

    bubba zanetti's got the proper attitude to fit the circumstances, and he had a blast. you were all at the same place, the only difference is in your expectations and your ability to cope with standing in a few lines and sweating.

    i must say, all the rounders are representin' and not complaining about the heat. go rounders!

  7. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by IndyGT
    Nothing like extreme heat stress to make people cranky.
    I suspect all of the other shortcomings could have been taken in stride if we'd been fortunate enough to have mild weather.
    The one thing the 'MOA had no control over is causing people to focus on weak areas where the organizers might have done a little better.
    I don't know about all of you, but I feel like I got my $35 worth between noon Thursday and the time I left at 4 p.m. Friday.
    The rally was well worth the $35 bucks, but I think some of you folks are awful quick to defend with notions of "because that's how it is" or "if you think you can do it better step up". That is a retarded argument. No one seems to read the rest of the posts that state compromises and suggestions for improvement. Take them with a grain of salt and learn to accept criticism and maybe retention rates will increase. My 2 cents.

  8. #38
    Registered User DLilah's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Chicago/Central Illinois
    Quote Originally Posted by Ol'Salt
    An event of this magnitude requires a large venue, such as a fairgrounds. Being a fairgrounds, there are limitations as to how many wooded areas are available due to considerations for having space for many events. And under a tree is not a great spot to be in a thunderstorm. There was a large camping area just west of the quiet camping that was used by less than 20 people. And one on the east side by racetrack that was vastly unused. Sorry you had a bad experience but we volunteers tried our hardest to accomodate everyone's needs and desires. Sure we made some mistakes but after all we are AMATUERS and don't do this for a living. Try Vermont and I pray you have a better time. At least meeting "Family" makes any inconviences bearable.IMHO I made friends with riders from Canada and Germany, couldn't do that at a local gathering!!! There's good and bad to everything except Heaven.
    Well said!!! Absolutely FANTASTIC rally! I saw no downfalls, even the hot weather didn't bother me. I made so many new friends, who have sooo much in common with me - that's more than I could have asked for, but I got soooo much more than that, and soooo cheaply. I thought all the volunteers did an EXCELLENT job and everyone should give them kudos, instead of complaints!!!!

    By the way, Ol' Salt, YOU ROCK!!!

  9. #39
    Registered Loser SHAG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Bradford, Pa

    Talking Another good one

    I had a great time & can't think of much to whine about except for.......

    The speeding ticket I got 1/2 hour before arriving!
    I didn't win anything!.... Again
    They didn't empty the garbage cans where I was camped!
    It was hot, but you could find shade & cold drinks in a jiffy!
    None of the young woman asked me to dance!
    Some of you people should enter a snoring contest!

    to all the people that made it possible & a great job done by all the volunteers! Can't wait till next year!

    I'd also like to thank Budweiser & earplugs for the restfull nights!
    Go like hell, You'll get there quicker
    05-GS Rock Red 101k miles
    2013 TW200

  10. #40
    I Used to Be Someone sheridesabeemer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Live Free & Ride, NH
    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered
    The rally was well worth the $35 bucks, but I think some of you folks are awful quick to defend with notions of "because that's how it is" or "if you think you can do it better step up". That is a retarded argument. No one seems to read the rest of the posts that state compromises and suggestions for improvement. Take them with a grain of salt and learn to accept criticism and maybe retention rates will increase. My 2 cents.
    What is retarded is to expect to be taken seriously lurking under the cover of a guest login.
    Constructive comments are being read...even saw a thank you for them. Roll with the punches is excellent advice.

    Imagine the numbers that will show for a venue as good as Burlington, VT! Set up you tent today!
    Gail Hatch
    SheRidesABeemer's Blog
    05 R12GS
    87 K75CT

  11. #41
    I thoroughly enjoyed the rally. i have only one complaint: there wasn't a single curve within an hour and a half of the place! what were they thinking?!?!?! we ride BMW's, bike's that handle well, not Hardly Ableson nonsense. the flat, straight roads around Lima are simply unforgivable. brought to us, no doubt, by the same folks who planned the rally in americas Dioxin capitol, Midland, MI a few years back. at least vermont isn't flat, i've got lots to look forward to for next year!

  12. #42
    In need of a nap. paper's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Rockton, IL
    4. Clearly the organisers don't do much camping- lights and noise will ruin a good nights sleep.
    Well, I've known Sue and Brian since 1987, and I met them at thier campfire at the GRRR rally in Bagley, WI.. They hold a big campout/party at thier house every fall, also.

    I grumbled under my breath about the full "Quiet" camping and was instructed that there was a ton of space in the Loud camping.. They were right, and, other than road noise, it was quiet...

    Now, the showers are another deal, and the sore spot with me on this rally, too.. Next weekend I'm headed over to the Wisconsin Moto Guzzi Rally and I know that I might have to wait for a shower for a few minutes.. There's only 5 men's showers for the 300 people at the rally.. Even if there was only 3000 guys camping, 16 shower stalls is a LONG way from being close to enough.. Oh well, it's done and that's the way it was.. My 11pm shower on Friday night felt pretty damn good, even if the floor was filthy.. (and I'm a guy who lives by himself and cleans once a year, whether the house needs it or not)

    the flat, straight roads around Lima are simply unforgivable. brought to us, no doubt, by the same folks who planned the rally in americas Dioxin capitol, Midland, MI a few years back.
    Sue and Brian do not control the location, but volunteered to be rally chairmen at a rally in the Midwest.. Having ridden with them, I know they'd love to have the rally on roads loaded with curves, hills, and everything else that's fun.. They must be tired of curves since they live on one...

    Given the choice, they would have loved to hold the rally along the Mississippi River, around the La Crosse area, or just south of there.. Curves and hills EVERYWHERE!!! But, the location has nothing that would hold a big local rally, let alone a National..

    Back in 1992, I had a blast at Du Quion, IL... Try to find a curve around there..

    Actually, Highway 117 just south of Lima wasn't half bad...
    2005 R1200GS
    1985 R80
    1980 R65
    BMWMOA Life Member

  13. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by itsbob
    I wish I could have made it the rest of the way to Ohio so I could have had a chance to b!tch about the camping..
    Yeah, me too. I wish I could have scored the time off. Sounds like a perfect
    M(oan) and
    W(hine) rally.

    And heat:
    >Vegas! Baby! It was 110 degrees there last week! It's a dry heat!

    Give me a break, we just set a record for consecutive days OVER 110*, not to mention a couple of "highest lows, EVER". The thermometer in my car read 121 on my commute to work Thursday. Still got up for a nice ride on the /5 Friday morning.

    Glad (almost) everyone had a good time. Thanks for posting the pics. Glad (almost) everyone had a safe trip.

    *for some reason, the "windchill factor" stops working at 110. The heat just changes from "conventional" to "convection".

  14. #44
    Focused kbasa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Marin By God County, California
    This was a 'hang' rally, not a 'ride' rally. Next year will be a 'ride' rally.

    Dave Swider
    Marin County, CA

    Some bikes. Some with motors, some without.

  15. #45

    Zen of Rallying

    Be in the moment, accept what is, adapt and accomodate. I experienced all that the "anonymous poster girl" complained about and more but it became part of the experience. I arrived on Thursday evening, found it crowded and asked someone to please move their bike so that I could camp and they did so cheerfully. I knew about the weather so I staked my tent down deep and delayed putting up my wing.
    My showers were taken at various times during the heat of the day when there were no lines at the trailer and I felt so much more comfortable with a cool shower during hot and humid days. I took off clothes to deal with the heat and drank lots of water during the day. I drank a fair amount of beer a to deal with the hot and humid nights.
    I yelled and danced to the blues and George and didn't think about anything else. I made it a point to seek out positive people who were having an equally good time. I politely moved away from people who were caught up in negative energy.
    Sleep? at a rally? Nevertheless a cheap sleep mask, available at walmart for about five bucks and my ear plugs were all I needed even with the klieg lights of walmart shining into my tent and the sound of bikes, cars and trucks nearby. Weather? who can predict that? It should not be the major factor in selecting a rally site. Canada is hot in July and August! Frankly I prepared for the weather, who wouldn't?
    The BMW MOA website has a link to camping suggestions. I recommend it.
    At the end of the day, I had a freaking good time at the rally. Thank you to the volunteers (my role was a small one compared to that of most others), Thanks to the participants who came in record numbers and adapted. A vast majority of them rode. I can handle motorhomes and trailers. It's about the motorcycle experience. I couldn't tell who rode in or drove and didn't care.

    This was a great time. The positives far outweighed the minor inconveniences. I guess it has to do with the mindset that you bring with you.
    See you in VT. Bring the bug spray, and the Long Trail!!!!

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